by Neil Gaiman | Children's Books |
ISBN: 0380807343 Global Overview for this book
Registered by DEESSE of Erstein, Alsace France on 7/26/2004
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1 journaler for this copy...
Journal Entry 1 by DEESSE from Erstein, Alsace France on Monday, July 26, 2004
From the back cover:

When Coraline steps through a door to find another house strangely similar to her own (only better), things seem marvelous. But there's another mother there, and another father, and they want her to stay and be their little girl. They want to change her and never let her go.
Coraline will have to fight with all her wits and courage if she is to save herself and return to her ordinary life.

Journal Entry 2 by DEESSE from Erstein, Alsace France on Friday, April 10, 2009
I don't know why I waited more than four years to read this nice book! I just started it for the "Bergabbauchallenge", as the task for April was to read a book with a first name in the title. So I picked it up from my shelf.

I liked the story a lot, a kind of fairy tale with a little girl (Coraline) as a heroine. Plenty of nice little details, quite some scary parts and just when you think all's nice again (as Miss Forcible, a character from the book, would put it while reading Coraline's tea leaves: "Well, looks like everything's mostly shipshape and Bristol fashion, luvvy," (p.150) ), there's one last thing to be "cared for".

I also liked the part of the black cat who helped Coraline.
"'Oh. It's you,' she said to the black cat. 'See?' said the cat. 'It wasn't so hard recognizing me, was it? Even without names.' 'Well, what if I wanted to call you?' The cat wrinkled its nose and managed to look unimpressed. 'Calling cats,' it confided, tends to be a rather overrated activity. Might as well call a whirlwind.'" (p.65)

I found the scene with the living toys quite cute:
"The toys fluttered excitedly as she walked in, as if they were pleased to see her, and a little tank rolled out of the box to greet her, its tread rolling over several other toys. It fell from the toy box onto the floor, tipping as it fell, and it lay on the carpet like a beetle on its back, grumbling and grinding its treads before Coraline picked it up and turned it over. The tank fled under the bed in embarrassment. (...) Then she (...) tipped all the toys in it out onto the carpet, where they grumbled and stretched and wiggled awkwardly free of each other." (p. 95f.)

The "thing" in the rotting theatre (while Coraline searches the missing souls of the children behind the mirror) is quite scary, I thought and very well described - I could almost "see" it:
"It was grayish white, twice the size of Coraline herself, ant it was stuck to the back wall like a slug. (...) As she got closer to the thing on the wall, she saw that it was some kind of a sac, like a spider's egg case. It twitched in the light beam. Inside the sac was something that looked like a person, but a person with two heads, with twice as many arms and legs as it should have. The creature in the sac seemed horribly unformed and unfinished, as if two plasticine people had been warmed and rolled together, squashed and pressed into one thing. (...)" (p.100f.)

Her "other father" in the cellar is rather scary too, and I like the way Coraline managed to escape:
"She could only think of two things to do. Either she could scream and try to run away, and be chased around a badly lit cellar by the huge grub thing, be chased until it caught her. Or she could do something else. So she did something else. As the thing reached her, Coraline put out her hand and closed it around the thing's remaining button eye, and she tugged as hard as she knew how." (p. 112f.)

After the cat had helped her to get another soul back from a rat by killing the rat, that was quite funnily described:
"She [Coraline] opened her eyes and saw the rat. It was lying on the brick path at the bottom of the stairs with a surprised look on its face - which was now several inches away from the rest of it." (p.123)

The song/poem "her father had made up for her when she was a little baby and which had always made her laugh." is very cute, too. "It went,

Oh - my twitchy witchy girl
I think you are so nice,
I give you bowls of porridge
And I give you bowls of ice
I give you lots of kisses,
And I give you lots of hugs,
But I never give you sandwiches
With bugs
(p. 126f.)

And to finish, a very poetic description of the last time she sees the black cat:
"It was the first time she had seen the cat in several days, since they had returned together from the other mother's place.
The cat walked over to her and jumped up onto the planks that covered the well. Then, slowly, it winked one eye at her.
It sprang down into the long grass in front of her, and rolled over onto its back, wiggling about ecstatically.
Coraline scratched and tickled the soft fur on its belly, and the cat purred contentedly. When it had had enough it rolled over onto its front once more and walked back toward the tennis court, like a tiny patch of midnight in the midday sun." (p. 159f.)

It will go in our class library now.

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